Can more be spent on direct care for the elderly?

The Audit Commission has revealed that over £300 million could be spent on direct care for older people if councils reduced their expenditure on social care assessments.
The number and cost of assessments and reviews have increased significantly in recent years, partly due to changes in policy including the move towards personalisation of care, but this does not explain the differences in unit cost across councils, the report finds.
The report sets out a number of ways in which councils can reduce the costs of assessment and review. These include:

  • Redesigning the 'care pathway' from a client's first contact with the council through to possible provision of care
  • Reducing overheads by streamlining administrative support
  • Matching staffing more closely to workload
  • Reviewing the grade mix of staff carrying out assessments and reviews
  • Collaborating with other councils to share costs.

Flame Care are wondering whether this is possible. Can councils spend less and still do their job efficiently?

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